Pervasive translation of lncRNAS

Ribosome profiling is a sequencing technique that detects regions in mRNAs that are being translated. Using this technique, researchers have observed mysterious patterns of translation in many transcripts believed to be non-coding (lncRNAs, or long non-coding RNAs). The patterns are very similar to those observed in protein-coding genes but the translated proteins are generally smaller. Aside from their sequence, we know nothing about these peptides. Are they functional? Do they reflect some background noise of the translation machinery?       You can get some insights from a a recent study published in bioRxiv by the group led by Mar Albà at the … Continue reading Pervasive translation of lncRNAS

How stress dictates cell expression

Stress causes a general down-regulation of gene expression in cells, together with the induction of a set of stress-responsive genes. How do cells know which specific genes to activate when they are silencing most of the others? The (yeast) answer is called Hog1, as shown in a recent paper published in Genome Biology by the Cell Signalling research group at the UPF. The authors, led by Francesc Posas, used yeast as a model organism to study the response to osmostress, and they focused on Hog1, a stress-activated protein kinase which is related to p38. Using chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) followed by sequencing (ChIP-Seq) they did … Continue reading How stress dictates cell expression

EMBO meeting on yeast gene transcription

The EMBO meeting on “Gene transcription in yeast: from mechanisms to gene regulatory networks” aims to catalyze the transformation of the field from classical genetics, biochemistry and structural biology to functional genomics and molecular systems biology of gene transcription and regulation. Organised by Francesc Posas, the director of the Department of Experimental and Health Sciences of the UPF, the meeting will take place in Girona on June 16-21, 2012. However, registration deadline is already on March 16, so don’t wait too long! You can already check out the programme on the conference website. Make sure you don’t miss this opportunity! Continue reading EMBO meeting on yeast gene transcription